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  5. "Dy afal di"

"Dy afal di"

Translation:Your apple

March 5, 2016



She's at it again! Running through the voice at normal speed, dy is with a schwa. But, listening to the slowed down speaker, she makes dy and di sound the same!


And that is wrong. The slow speed audio has been disabled, but it may take some time to take effect.


Why do you need by "dy" and "di" in this case?


You don't have to have the "di", but it does have emphasis. This is just the way Welsh forms possessives.


It is worth noting, for anyone that thinks your translation does not make much sense, that it would not originally have been a pronoun. It would have been a different word whose only purpose was to emphasise whose apple it was. For some reason, these words, one for each person (whatever they were in Proto-Welsh) got replaced by ordinary pronouns, thus reducing by seven the number of words you have to learn when learning Welsh. So whilst it may seem odd, it is also very helpful. I have written a bit more here. D


Now I'm confused with du for black and du for yours.


Now I'm confused with du for black and du for yours.

"your" is di, not du. They're pronounced the same in the south, though. (But are distinct in the north.)

And watch out for dy dŷ du di "your black house" :)


Not quite. It is the dy at the beginning that is 'your'. The di at the end, a variant of ti, the simple pronoun 'you', is an emphatic particle. It adds extra oomph to the dy, but it never means 'your' by itself.

Shall we get really confused? Yes, let's.

English (plural) Welsh Gaelic Irish French Spanish German English
you (subject) ti t(h)u tu du thou
you (object) ti t(h)u te te dich thee
your dy {S} do {S} do {S} ton/ta/tes tu dein… thy
(emphatic) di -sa -sa - - - -
black du dubh dubh n/a n/a n/a n/a
  • {S} = soft mutation
  • The bh in the Gaelic and Irish is normally pronounced, but not in this word, so the b (or something like it) that there must have been once has been lost in those languages as well as Welsh. There is a related word in all modern Celtic languages. It is claimed that this comes from a Proto-Indo-European word that means 'deep' - and is related to deep as well. I don't know how strong the evidence is, but it is quite possible as the words for 'black' and 'white' in various languages come from non-colour adjectives that effectively come to mean 'colourless', such as 'shiny'. In this case we can imagine that lack of colour you see if you look into a deep well - i.e. 'black'. D


That makes sense. Diolch

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